When you buy an item from the shop, you expect it to be what it says on the label. However, an investigation that even got the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission involved found that some products weren’t making the cut.
In a move that threatened to rock supermarket giant Aldi’s jump to the top of the financial charts, they admitted to selling almost 190,00 units of oregano that only contained about 35% oregano. ACCC Rod Sims told Stock and Land, “This is extremely bad behaviour. I don’t think it’s in anybody’s head that you’re getting anything other than pure oregano and our message to retailers is: Check the products you’re selling”. He added, “The offer of refunds is there. If you take back the empty container you’ll get a refund, take back proof of purchase, you’ll get a refund.”
This finding prompted the consumer magazine Choice to conduct an investigation into other oregano products only to find that seven out of 12 of the most popular brands were also cutting oregano down to less than 50% of the actual contents. Instead, the bulk of the “oregano” was actually olive and sumac leaves.
Tom Godfrey from Choice said, “We need be able to trust what is written on the labels of the foods we purchase in our supermarkets”. He added, “With so many consumers getting less than they bargained for with this popular herb, we hope the ACCC action will go some way to restoring trust in the nation’s spice racks.”
Aldi stated that when the problem was brought to their attention, they took action. A spokesperson said, “If products sold in Aldi stores do not meet our stringent quality specifications, we have strict quality assurance policies in place to address any issues in a timely manner,”